The number of homes affected by Hurricane Ian in Key West continues to rise

October 7 – New numbers have come out from the city of Key West that 429 houses have been affected by Hurricane Ian – that could mean about 1,000 people.

Jim Mooney, Florida House of Representatives Member serving the 120th district, joined Good Morning Keys on KeysTalk 96.9/102/5FM this morning to talk about the goings on in the state.

Mooney said, “We struggled to get FEMA designation. A thousand people in the city of Key West is a huge number. I don’t think anybody knew it was going to be this bad. That said, (Mayor Johnston) is handling this thing very well and I believe the city of Key West will come out in good shape.”

FEMA has now designated Key West a federal disaster zone, so funding will be available from the federal government.

We’re still waiting to hear about individual assistance, but signs look good.

Mooney said, “Everybody’s working in unison. Certainly that’s a good thing.”

The Rate of Growth Ordinance units in Marathon and Islamorada may eventually reach the state level if the State Supreme Court does not hear those appeals.

Mooney said, “We’ve actually had conversations with the city of Marathon. Hopefully we’ll get the right ruling and can make this happen. Certainly I think we have a game plan that will help. I try to let people know everything that happens in Tallahassee is completely 180 off of how it impacts Monroe County. It just seems like every bill is just different because of our designation and the rules and regulations that we work and work around, but I think we can get to the finish line with this somehow. I hope we do because we need those units.”

Hurricane Irma took out a lot of workforce housing from the Keys.

Mooney said, “There’s a lot of great projects that are wrapping up and have been wrapped up recently, but yet it’s still falling a little bit short.”

With Hurricane Ian, the housing situation has become even more dire, particularly with the number of affected homes growing each day.

Mooney said, “Hopefully those will be repaired, but what they needed was FEMA to get in there and offer some assistance ASAP. They are doing that now. The governor’s team has been working diligently since day one. For Monroe County as well. It’s all coming together. Everybody’s been doing what they need to do to get this done and get it accomplished and get us moving forward so we can recover and get back to normal.”

The losses from Ian are in the billions and tens of billions of dollars for insurance companies, which will certainly affect the industry.

Mooney said, “At the end of the day, the stronger we build, the better our insurance rates will be. We also know that we are not getting any credit for our building codes and therein lies part of the problem. That is wrong. We need to get credit for what we do, but we don’t.”